What is AME in Aviation? (Aviation Medical Examiner)

An Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) is a licensed healthcare professional who performs medical examinations for pilots and other aviation personnel. They play a critical role in ensuring the safety of the aviation industry by assessing the medical fitness of individuals involved in flight operations. AMEs are responsible for granting medical certificates to pilots, air traffic controllers, flight engineers, and other aviation professionals, based on their physical and mental health.

The role of an Aviation Medical Examiner is crucial as it helps to determine whether an individual is medically fit to operate an aircraft and perform various duties in the aviation field. They evaluate a wide range of medical aspects, including overall health, vision, hearing, cardiovascular fitness, neurological condition, and psychological well-being. Through detailed medical examinations, AMEs aim to identify any underlying medical conditions or risks that could potentially compromise flight safety.

What are the Responsibilities of an Aviation Medical Examiner?

An Aviation Medical Examiner carries out several important responsibilities related to assessing the health and fitness of aviation personnel. Some of these responsibilities include:

  • Evaluating and examining pilots, air traffic controllers, and other aviation professionals to determine their medical fitness for duty;
  • Reviewing medical history and records to identify any previous or existing medical conditions that could impact the individual’s ability to perform their duties safely;
  • Conducting comprehensive medical examinations, which may include physical examinations, vision and hearing tests, laboratory tests, and psychological assessments;
  • Interpreting and analyzing medical data and test results to determine the applicant’s eligibility for a medical certificate;
  • Providing guidance and counseling to individuals regarding their medical conditions and any necessary treatment or follow-up;
  • Advising on the appropriate restrictions or limitations for individuals with specific medical conditions;
  • Maintaining accurate and up-to-date medical records of all applicants and certificate holders.

The assessment conducted by an AME is in line with the guidelines and regulations set by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) or the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), depending on the country. These guidelines ensure that all aviation personnel meet the necessary medical standards and are not at increased risk of compromising the safety of flight operations.

How to Become an Aviation Medical Examiner?

Becoming an Aviation Medical Examiner requires specific qualifications and training. To become an AME, one must have a medical degree from a recognized medical school and hold a valid medical license. The process of becoming an AME typically involves the following steps:

  • Attaining the required medical qualifications: One must complete the necessary medical education and training to become a licensed physician. This typically involves completing medical school and obtaining a medical degree (MD or DO).
  • Obtaining a medical license: After completing medical school, the individual must obtain a medical license to practice medicine legally. The requirements for obtaining a medical license vary by country or state.
  • Gaining experience in aviation medicine: To gain expertise in aviation medicine, individuals can pursue additional training or fellowship programs in aerospace medicine or related fields. These programs provide specialized knowledge and skills necessary for evaluating aviation personnel.
  • Attending an Aviation Medical Examiner course: The next step is to attend an AME course approved by the CAA or FAA. This course provides comprehensive training on the medical standards, regulations, and procedures specific to aviation medicine.
  • Passing the AME certification exam: After completing the course, aspiring AMEs must pass an examination conducted by the CAA or FAA to become certified as an Aviation Medical Examiner.
  • Maintaining certification and staying updated: Once certified, AMEs must participate in regular continuing education programs and stay updated with the latest advancements and changes in aviation medicine. This ensures that AMEs stay competent and up-to-date with the evolving medical standards and practices in the aviation industry.

Aviation Medical Examiners are subject to periodic audits and reviews to ensure compliance with the established guidelines and standards. By maintaining the necessary qualifications and staying updated with the latest developments in aviation medicine, AMEs contribute significantly to the safety and well-being of the aviation industry.


Aviation Medical Examiners play a vital role in ensuring the safety of the aviation industry. By evaluating the medical fitness of pilots and aviation personnel, they help to minimize the risks of medical conditions that could compromise flight safety. Becoming an Aviation Medical Examiner requires specialized qualifications and training in aviation medicine, along with a medical degree and a valid medical license. By adhering to the established guidelines and staying updated with the latest advancements in aviation medicine, AMEs contribute to maintaining the high standards of safety in the aviation field.

For More: What is RESA in Aviation? (Runway End Safety Area)